Brewers Plate 2017 - #RockThePlate

The annual rock and roll themed event, Brewers Plate 2017, returns to Toronto on May 4th from 6 pm to 11 pm. The event will take place at the Corus Quay Building (25 Dockside Drive) in support of War Child Canada.




The event is to help War Child Canada raise money to support children and families around the world. All of the  restaurants and Ontario brewers involved in this charitable event has graciously donated their time and materials to create a wonderful night for attendees. The indulgent food event features an array of craft beer and unlimited sampling of local dishes. 

"We are thrilled to mark the 10th anniversary of the Brewers Plate with our most exciting and diverse roster of brewers, restaurants and Chefs ever," said Les Murray, President of Beerlicious Inc., “sampling great food and beer while having a great time in support of such a worthwhile partner in War Child Canada makes this event a must attend."



Last year's event raised $9,200 in support of War Child Canada to help children in war-affected communities reclaim their childhood through access to education, opportunity and justice. They hope to do the same this year! 

The Brewers Plate 2017 is proud to present its curated list of brewers, restaurants and Chefs including:

Restaurants

Palais Royale
Trattoria Nervosa
Le Dolci Toronto
Heirloom Toronto
Ted’s World Famous BBQ
Hangry Catering Co.
Tundra Restaurant & Bar
Globe Bistro
Cheese Boutique
Mangia & Bevi
Beaus All Natural Brewing
ChocoSol

Brewers

Old Tomorrow Beer
The Collingwood Brewery
All or Nothing Brewhouse
Station Cold Brew Coffee Co.
Henderson Brewing Co.  Walter Craft Caesar
Beaus All Natural Brewing
Sawdust City Brewing Co.
Great Lakes Brewery
Muskoka Brewery
MacKinnon Brothers Brewing
Steam Whistle Brewing



Tickets to the Brewers Plate 2017 are now on sale through www.BrewersPlateToronto.org and start at $90 each + taxes and fees. New for this year: Brewers Plate 2017 is offering an Entourage 5 Pack, valued at $400 + taxes and fees, so if attendees are planning on bringing friends this may be the ticket pack for them. They'll be able to see savings of $10 per ticket with this package. They can also try their luck at winning tickets in the coming weeks by tuning in to Brewers Plate's fantastic partners at Q107 and 102.1 the Edge.

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[Japan] Gontran Cherrier Tokyo

I love Tokyo and its food scene. Not only do they offer a variety of cuisine, they also have an excellent selection of patisseries and bakeries. One of the bakeries that piqued my interest was Gontran Cherrier Tokyo after seeing pictures of their matcha croissant on Instagram. 


 The two-floors bakery was centrally located in the busy districts of Shinjuku/Shibuya, so definitely a prime spot. The space was of average size, but they had a variety of different pastries out on displayed, and customers are to take a tray and tong to select their pastries.


 The first thing that I grabbed was the Matcha Croissant (¥ 250 each). The croissant was one of the best ones I have had, and rival to the ones in Paris.






We had breakfast an hour earlier, but we will always have room for more food =)


Address: Shibuya, 1 Chome−14−11, BCサロン



Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) Event at Ripley’s Aquarium

Prior to our trip to Stockholm, we had the pleasure of attending a private tasting party hosted by Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) to celebrate the launch of Ocean Brands' new line of sustainable seafood. At the event, we learned about the sustainability and traceability in the seafood industry with Ocean Brands such Ocean's and Gold Seal Canada.



Seafood from MSC certified fisheries can be distinguished by the blue MSC eco-label, so that consumers are able to make informed decisions about the seafood they purchase. MSC-labeled seafood products are available in several grocery chains in Canada including Sobey's, Metro, Loblaws, and more.


The MSC is an international non-profit organization addressing the problem of unsustainable fishing, and safeguarding seafood supplies for the future. The blue MSC label and fishery certification program contribute to the health of the world’s oceans. The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) aims to transform the seafood market by recognizing and rewarding sustainable fishing practices and influencing the choices people make when buying seafood. They also work with scientists, fisheries, seafood producers and brands to promote sustainable fishing and safeguard seafood supplies for the future. 

To achieve the MSC Fisheries Standard, fisheries must meet 28 performance indicators for sustainability across three principles:

1) Sustainable fish stocks
2) Minimizing environmental impacts
3) Effective management



One of the newest products is Ocean's new MSC certified Pole & Line (skipjack) tuna. The tuna comes from the Maldives in the Indian Ocean, and the fishery used have been independently certified to the globally recognized MSC standard for sustainable, well-managed fisheries.
 We were treated to a three-course meal at the Marine Stewardship Council Event prepared by Chef Darryl Fletcher. The recipes used Gold Seal Canned Sockeye Salmon and Pole & Line (skipjack) Tuna, which are 100% sourced from fisheries that are MSC certified as sustainable.  




Spring Tuna Salad

Ocean’s Pole & Line Chunk Light Tuna - heirloom tomatoes, cucumber, fennel, Kalamata olives, feta, mint, citrus vinaigrette


Happy Tuna Bowl

Ocean’s Pole & Line Flaked Light Tuna - tri-colour quinoa, sweet peas, celery, red pepper, avocado, lime, cilantro, pickled pears


Protein Power Salmon Kofta

Gold Seal Sockeye Salmon (skinless boneless) - lentils, oatmeal, cottage cheese, dates, chia Seeds, lemon, Chipotle yogurt


All three recipes are available here on the Ocean Brands' website.

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Disclaimer: The food provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.
 

Good Earth Coffeehouse

Good Earth Coffeehouse is a Calgary-based chain of coffee shops with several locations in Calgary. The first location opened in Calgary in 1991, and they now have over 45 locations throughout Alberta, British Columbia, Saskatchewan and Ontario.

Earlier this year, they expanded into the Toronto market with a new location on Jarvis and Dundas Street East. They are situated in a prime location as it's steps away from the Eaton's Center and Ryerson University. Students and workers in the area can grab a coffee and a quick bite in the morning.




The new location is an open-space concept with lots of natural light, and has a decent seating capacity. Good Earth Coffeehouse also offers free wireless Internet to their customers, so people are welcome to use it to work or study.



The coffeehouse is dedicated to providing the best quality food and beverage products to its customers and believes in exceptional coffee quality.
"The coffee scene in Toronto is constantly evolving and diversifying. We are excited to launch Good Earth in this market," said Nan Eskenazi, Founder, Good Earth Coffeehouse. "Good Earth prides itself on offering exceptional coffee and fresh food with a down-to-earth attitude, making Toronto an ideal market for us to grow into."


Good Earth Coffeehouse's coffee and espresso menu are based upon the Italian tradition of espresso drinks. They chose the Italian tradition because of its integrity, simplicity and authenticity with respect to espresso drinks. I didn't get their coffee, but I will try it next time. Instead, I opted for their Caffe Latte (frappes) ($4.75) from their cold handcrafted drink menu. It was a nice smooth drink that contained a good helping of caffeine.



Good Earth Coffeehouse serves fresh-baked goods, hot breakfast, soups, salads and various hot and cold drinks. Some of the sweets that they offer are cinnamon rolls, cookies, rice krispies squares, and more. 




I also got the Honey Lemon Squish ($2.75) - fresh lemon zest, wildflower honey, and cream cheese filling as a treat. 


Aside from their coffee and pastries, they also offer a small selection of breakfast items like the Southwest Breakfast Wrap ($5.50) -  egg, hash brown, cheddar, fresh spinach and salsa




Good Earth Coffeehouse is a great addition to the neighborhood, where you grab and go.

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Address: 198 Jarvis St, Toronto, ON M5B 2B7

Disclaimer: The food provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.



Fastvenues x Cadillac Jenkins

I had the pleasure of joining both Jacky and Christine at Cadillac Jenkins courtesy of Fastvenues last month. Fastvenues is a community marketplace for people to discover and book set-menu meals at restaurants online. The company was founded in early 2016. and has since partnered up with several local restaurants to provide curated dining experiences.


 
Fastvenues simplifies the process of eating out by allowing diners to book an experience of one's liking, choose the meal, and pay for the bill in advance (including tax and tip). All you have to do is pay online, go to the restaurant and dine without needing to bring out your wallet. It's easy and convenient for any occasions like catching up with friends, casual dinners, and even dates. The one thing is that packages must be booked at least 24 hours in advance, so that the restaurant are aware of the reservation.

The process was seamless, as I found the website to be relatively user-friendly for the average user. Restaurant options are displayed clearly to the right, while the advanced search option is located to the left. You can use the search option to narrow your results to find a restaurant that fits your criteria. Once you have a restaurant that you would like to book, you can log in or register an account to start the payment process.


Cashless payments have become more prominent over the years, as the world is now more digitally advanced. With Fastvenues everything is paid in advanced online, and you get a breakdown of the costs prior to paying. Simple!

We were given the opportunity to dine at Cadillac Jenkins; a Caribbean-inspired restaurant serving up unique eats, libations, and music on Queen St W. I'd say that their dishes are more elevated version of Caribbean cuisine. Price-wise, I'd say it's one of the pricier options ($60 total), but there are other budget-friendly options as well on Fastvenues.

We booked the $45 "The Experience" package at
Cadillac Jenkins, which was a four-course meal. We started off with our first starter, Lobster Trini Doubles - butter poached lobster, chana. Doubles are common street foods in Trinidad and Tobago, and they are often stuffed with curried chick peas between two flat fried bread. This was my first time trying doubles, and I really liked the flakiness and softness of the buns. An excellent start to a meal. 


Next up was the Jerk Pork Tacos - two soft corn tortillas, 36 hour marinated pork shoulder, Pico, smoked taco sauce, lime black pepper crema. The pork shoulder was well-marinated and flavorful considering it was marinated for 36 hours. Additionally, even though it was another starter, it was quite filling. 



I was looking forward the most to our main, which was the Crispy Skin Jerk Chicken - rice and pea risotto, grilled scallions, pepper sauce. The jerk chicken was really good, but I would have liked it a little more spiced. I thought it was slightly too mild for my taste buds. The hot sauce that accompanied our Doubles starter would have been the perfect side accompaniment to the jerk chicken dish.



Last up was dessert, which changes daily. Our meal ended off with the Rum Cake with Whipped Cream and Chocolate Sauce. It was a layer of delicate, yet rich rum-flavored cake with a generous helping of whipped cream.


The overall booking process was simple, as all I had to do was create an account and book the reservation. The website's interface was user-friendly, and it was super easy to navigate and make a payment. However, I believe that there should be better communications between Fastvenues and the partnered restaurants. None of us were asked for any documentation (or our names) to confirm the reservation when we walked in. This may cause confusion or complication if the dinner took place during the weekends or holidays, where it may be busier.

I'd also suggest that the restaurants provide a menu of the curated set-course meal. It doesn't have to be fancy (just on white paper), so that diners know what they're eating instead of checking the menu on their phones for each course. Fastvenues is still a new company that is continuing to update and renovate their system, so I am looking forward to what they offer in the future. Overall, they are an excellent way for people to try unique dining experiences in the city of Toronto.

Thank you Jacky for the invitation! 

Fastvenues

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Cadillac Jenkins

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Address: 930 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1G6

Disclaimer: The food provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.